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Update from Museum Foundation President

by Mike Weiss, President, FLCM 

This article is part of a collection of updates in the Winter, 2014 edition of Muse News, the newsletter of the Las Cruces Museum System.

The "Rat on a Stick" booth is always popular.

The “Rat on a Stick” booth is always popular.

The big event for the foundation this quarter was the Renaissance Fair sponsored by the Doña Ana Arts Council. Once again we sold “Rat on a Stick” which proved to be popular and profitable. With good weather for the weekend and the help of foundation members John Deck, John Northcutt, Bill Wachtel, Karen Feder, Bert Stevens, Gail Larkin, Leigh Hernandez, Jim Garthwait, Jennifer Perez, Laurie Smith, Randy Fromm, Helen and Jerry Moser and Mike Weiss, we managed to have one of our more successful rat-selling events. 

We are now well into the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. We think about our families and community during this season, and it is a good time to reflect on the contributions to the community made by the staffs of the Museum Department and four museums—the Branigan Cultural Center, the Museum of Art, the Museum of Nature & Science, and the Railroad Museum. 

Volunteer Gail Larkin serves hungry customers.

Volunteer Gail Larkin serves hungry customers.

Throughout the year the museums sponsor a variety of free activities for people in Las Cruces. Regular monthly lectures at the museums cover topics in science, art, history, and culture. Book lovers can take advantage of book clubs which meet monthly at the museums to discuss different books. Activities for children from toddlers on up open the worlds of science, art, and history to eager inquiring minds. Again, these activities are free. Go to the city website,, and click on Departments, then Community & Cultural Services. 

December started with several museum events. Once again, the Old-Fashioned Holiday event at the Railroad Museum was extremely well attended, with close to 3,000 parents and children excited to see Santa Clause arrive on a BNSF locomotive. The children then were able to talk with Santa about what they wanted for Christmas. 

Again this year the Railroad Museum provided events where special needs children and adults could meet with Santa. 

Current members and those interested in becoming members are always welcome to join our volunteer efforts to ensure the Las Cruces museums remain a vibrant piece of the fabric of our community. At our January meeting, we elected board members and I will continue for the next 2 years as President. Jim Garthwait was elected Vice-President and Bill Wachtel will continue on as Treasurer. 

Information is available via email at Also please visit our website,, or friend us on Facebook at Look for museum updates and foundation activities in our monthly Bulletin article, published every first Friday coinciding with the Downtown Arts Ramble. 

For more information on becoming a member of the foundation and support, the arts, the sciences and history in Las Cruces, pick up a brochure during a visit to one of the museums or contact us at

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